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Verbal Judo: The Gentle Art of Persuasion

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Overview

Improve communication, resolve conflicts, and avoid the most common conversational disasters through simple, easily remembered strategies that deflect and redirect negative behaviour.

Verbal Judo is the martial art of the mind and mouth that can show you how to be better prepared in every verbal encounter. Listen and speak more effectively, engage people through empathy (the most powerful word in the English language), avoid the most common conversational disasters, and use ...

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Verbal Judo: The Gentle Art of Persuasion

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Overview

Improve communication, resolve conflicts, and avoid the most common conversational disasters through simple, easily remembered strategies that deflect and redirect negative behaviour.

Verbal Judo is the martial art of the mind and mouth that can show you how to be better prepared in every verbal encounter. Listen and speak more effectively, engage people through empathy (the most powerful word in the English language), avoid the most common conversational disasters, and use proven strategies that allow you to successfully communicate your point of view and take the upper hand in most disputes.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060577650
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/2/2004
  • Edition description: Revised Edition
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.31 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

George J. Thompson, Ph.D., is a former English professor and a black bet master of karate. He created and crash-tested verbal judo when he was a police officer on an urban beat. He is now a popular lecturer and lives -in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jerry B. Jenkins was most recently the co-author of Miracle Mon. The Nolan Ryan Story.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Birth of the Communication Samurai

It was the most outrageous way to bust up a fight I had ever seen. I'd been a rookie cop ten days when my partner got the call. At two A.m. we were dispatched to break up a nasty domestic dispute in a tenement on the east side of Emporia, Kansas, notorious for drug dealing and random violence.

We could hear the couple's vicious, mouth-to-mouth combat from the street. My training sergeant and partner, Bruce Fair, and I approached and peeked through the halfopen door. Then Bruce just walked in without bothering to knock. I watched as he strode right past the warring couple, took off his uniform cap, sighed, and planted himself on the couch. Ignoring the argument, he picked up a newspaper and thumbed through the classifieds!

Leaning against the door with my hand on the butt of my .357, I was flabbergasted. Bruce seemed to violate all the rules of police procedure. I had never seen him enter a house without identifying himself, without asking permission, or without at least saying why he was there. There he was, treating an angry couple in a tenement apartment as if he were a visiting uncle.

Bruce kept reading and the couple kept arguing, occasionally glancing at the cop on their couch. They had yet to notice me. As the man cursed his wife, Bruce rattled the newspaper. "Folks. Folks! Excuse me! Over here!"

The stunned husband flashed a double take. "What are you doing here?"

Bruce said, "You got a phone? Look here. A 1950 Dodge! Cherry condition! Can I borrow your phone? I know it's late, but I don't want to miss out on this. Where's your phone? I need to callright now!"

The husband pointed to the phone, incredulous. Bruce rose and dialed, then mumbled into the phone. He slammed it down. "Can you believe they wouldn't talk to me just because it's two in the morning?"

By now the fight had evaporated, the couple standing there as dumbfounded as I was. "By the way," Bruce, said pleasantly, as if just becoming aware, "is anything the matter here? Anything my partner and I can do for you?"

The husband and wife looked at the floor and shook their heads. "Not really, no." We chatted with them a bit, reminding them that it was late and that everyone around would appreciate a little peace and quiet. Soon we were on our way.

Then I was really puzzled. Earlier that night we had broken up a similar dispute in the classic cop fashion. We quickly took control with polite authority, performed what's known as a "separate and suture" (where the warring parties are separated, calmed, and then brought back together), and diffused the situation. That was the way I had been trained, so what was this new twist?

I mean, as a former college English professor who had taught Milton and Shakespeare for ten years, I'd seen some ingenious twists of plot. But a cop taming two animals by intruding as a rude but friendly guest? Bruce had forced those people to play host to him whether or not they wanted to.

As soon as we were back in the squad car I asked him, "What in the world was that all about? Why did we separate and suture earlier and pull this crazy newspaper — and telephone gag just now?"

He shrugged. "I don't know. I've been on the street more'n ten years. You just learn."

"Hey, I may be new at this," I said, "but I'm no kid. [I was thirty-five.] I haven't got ten years. I could get blown away if I tried that stunt. We need to talk. Tell me how you knew you could get away with that."

I didn't realize it then, but that evening marked the birth of Verbal judo and was the first lesson in my career as a communication samurai. I had studied the martial arts, starting with genuine Indian wrestling, since I was six and held black belts in judo and tae kwon do karate, but I had never seen such principles so effectively applied to life on the streets.

I It was one thing to practice the martial arts in a storefront dojo with polite, honorable opponents bowing and working together, competing and learning. (In judo I had learned the gentle art of redirecting my opponent's energy to achieve my own goal. If he came straight at me, I would sidestep and try a move that would add to his momentum, carrying him past me where I could take control.) But I had watched Bruce Fair do virtually the same thing without an ounce of physical force. With his mouth, a newspaper, and a telephone, he had calmed two hotheads with redirective techniques he had absorbed through experience.

I was intrigued. During the remainder of my tenure as a police officer-working everything from canine patrol to hostage negotiations — I carefully, watched and listened to guys like Bruce. I began systematically studying the communication techniques of salty old police dogs, carrying a tape recorder with me on every call. I listened not only to what, was said, but also to how it was said. Time after time I saw older, street-savvy officers assume roles and counterroles, suavely manipulating people's energies to calm otherwise dangerous situations.

I quickly became convinced that good police officers are the greatest communicators in the world. They often have to issue orders and elicit compliance from hostile subjects, aswhen they're derailing a drug deal and the gang members are reaching for their AK-47s. Despite my classical education,which had exposed me to t , he finest rhetoricians of the ages,I realized that my real postdoctoral work hadn't been done at Princeton. It was unfolding for me right on the streets of Emporia.,

Verbal Judo. Copyright © by George Thompson. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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First Chapter

Verbal Judo
The Gentle Art of Persuasion

Chapter One

Birth of the Communication Samurai

It was the most outrageous way to bust up a fight I had ever seen. I'd been a rookie cop ten days when my partner got the call. At two A.m. we were dispatched to break up a nasty domestic dispute in a tenement on the east side of Emporia, Kansas, notorious for drug dealing and random violence.

We could hear the couple's vicious, mouth-to-mouth combat from the street. My training sergeant and partner, Bruce Fair, and I approached and peeked through the halfopen door. Then Bruce just walked in without bothering to knock. I watched as he strode right past the warring couple, took off his uniform cap, sighed, and planted himself on the couch. Ignoring the argument, he picked up a newspaper and thumbed through the classifieds!

Leaning against the door with my hand on the butt of my .357, I was flabbergasted. Bruce seemed to violate all the rules of police procedure. I had never seen him enter a house without identifying himself, without asking permission, or without at least saying why he was there. There he was, treating an angry couple in a tenement apartment as if he were a visiting uncle.

Bruce kept reading and the couple kept arguing, occasionally glancing at the cop on their couch. They had yet to notice me. As the man cursed his wife, Bruce rattled the newspaper. "Folks. Folks! Excuse me! Over here!"

The stunned husband flashed a double take. "What are you doing here?"

Bruce said, "You got a phone? Look here. A 1950 Dodge! Cherry condition! Can I borrow your phone? I know it's late, but I don't want to miss out on this. Where's your phone? I need to call right now!"

The husband pointed to the phone, incredulous. Bruce rose and dialed, then mumbled into the phone. He slammed it down. "Can you believe they wouldn't talk to me just because it's two in the morning?"

By now the fight had evaporated, the couple standing there as dumbfounded as I was. "By the way," Bruce, said pleasantly, as if just becoming aware, "is anything the matter here? Anything my partner and I can do for you?"

The husband and wife looked at the floor and shook their heads. "Not really, no." We chatted with them a bit, reminding them that it was late and that everyone around would appreciate a little peace and quiet. Soon we were on our way.

Then I was really puzzled. Earlier that night we had broken up a similar dispute in the classic cop fashion. We quickly took control with polite authority, performed what's known as a "separate and suture" (where the warring parties are separated, calmed, and then brought back together), and diffused the situation. That was the way I had been trained, so what was this new twist?

I mean, as a former college English professor who had taught Milton and Shakespeare for ten years, I'd seen some ingenious twists of plot. But a cop taming two animals by intruding as a rude but friendly guest? Bruce had forced those people to play host to him whether or not they wanted to.

As soon as we were back in the squad car I asked him, "What in the world was that all about? Why did we separate and suture earlier and pull this crazy newspaper -- and telephone gag just now?"

He shrugged. "I don't know. I've been on the street more'n ten years. You just learn."

"Hey, I may be new at this," I said, "but I'm no kid. [I was thirty-five.] I haven't got ten years. I could get blown away if I tried that stunt. We need to talk. Tell me how you knew you could get away with that."

I didn't realize it then, but that evening marked the birth of Verbal judo and was the first lesson in my career as a communication samurai. I had studied the martial arts, starting with genuine Indian wrestling, since I was six and held black belts in judo and tae kwon do karate, but I had never seen such principles so effectively applied to life on the streets.

I It was one thing to practice the martial arts in a storefront dojo with polite, honorable opponents bowing and working together, competing and learning. (In judo I had learned the gentle art of redirecting my opponent's energy to achieve my own goal. If he came straight at me, I would sidestep and try a move that would add to his momentum, carrying him past me where I could take control.) But I had watched Bruce Fair do virtually the same thing without an ounce of physical force. With his mouth, a newspaper, and a telephone, he had calmed two hotheads with redirective techniques he had absorbed through experience.

I was intrigued. During the remainder of my tenure as a police officer-working everything from canine patrol to hostage negotiations -- I carefully, watched and listened to guys like Bruce. I began systematically studying the communication techniques of salty old police dogs, carrying a tape recorder with me on every call. I listened not only to what, was said, but also to how it was said. Time after time I saw older, street-savvy officers assume roles and counterroles, suavely manipulating people's energies to calm otherwise dangerous situations.

I quickly became convinced that good police officers are the greatest communicators in the world. They often have to issue orders and elicit compliance from hostile subjects, aswhen they're derailing a drug deal and the gang members are reaching for their AK-47s. Despite my classical education,which had exposed me to t , he finest rhetoricians of the ages,I realized that my real postdoctoral work hadn't been done at Princeton. It was unfolding for me right on the streets of Emporia.,

Verbal Judo
The Gentle Art of Persuasion
. Copyright © by George Thompson. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 32 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 32 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2010

    interesting

    While I found this book informative and useful I did have issues with how many time the author repeated himself as if stroking his own ego. I found there to be a lot of build up of how you will learn this and how you will learn that but that seemed to be it. There is some follow through on these things just not as much as I would have liked or expected. Other than that it was an alright book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Useful for Everyone of all ages

    A retired police officer reccomended this book to me. He said it seem like i was communicating the wrong way with my husband. While reading the book it made me realized that i need to know how to communicate with different types of people. The book made me realize that my actions may cuase the other party to cause confrontation. The judo aspect doesnt relate to using force to use against the person but use it as ammunition to win the conflict. Its not about winning, rather it is about having both parties being content. Most of the examples in the book are about police situations but it also relates to work or everyday life with family.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I would recommend you to read this book.

    This book was the first book that ever, EVER tought me about the difference between sympathy and empathy. it also showed me how to use MY own words to win an argument. im young and i've understood every, word so there is no real reason why you shouldn't. i highly recommend this to everyone. EVERYONE.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2013

    Great book

    I love this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2013

    A perfect book for anyone looking for communication skills- or even just a great read!

    This book was very good. I work on the telephone all day and don't actually work with customers face to face, so being able to gain some insight on how to diffuse situations with words was the greatest thing to read. It's amazing how much words can change a conversation. I highly recommend this book for anybody out there who likes a good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2012

    How to communicate with (more) finesse

    Keep cool, have a plan, stay on plan. Vocalize.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2012

    Waste of time

    I admit I quit one-third of the way through (then skimmed). The author spent most of the time telling the reader how important his concepts are. The only real point up to page 70 was a lengthly discussion of the importance of empathy. He sucks-up to cops alot. Frankly I find his personal experiences self-aggrandizing to the point of disbelief. I am wary of the law enforcement guys that didn't alredy grasp these concepts.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 2, 2011

    A must read for all must carry out difficult verbal interactions

    This book is a must read for all in law enforcememt amd for anyone who wats to learn the right way to direct, lead, or even simply to talk to people. This author has experience in both the street-side and academic side of communication (or as much experience academically as universities claim to provide) and truly underlimes how to be a better cop, spouse, son or daughter, friend, boss, and communicator in general. I'd definitely recommentthis book to others (and already have), and even wouldn't mind seeing one of his seminars, given the chance.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2010

    Instructions for Living

    I had the good forture to attend Verbal Judo training twice, approximately 15 years ago. I believe the courses, and the book, helped to make me a more effective communicator. More importantly, they've made me more at ease with stressful situations and taught me how not to take things personally.

    I had misplaced my copy. Since I like to be able to share the knowledge and wisdom within the pages of Verbal Judo, I purchased a new copy - which is already on loan to a friend.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2007

    Read This Book!

    An excellent read, very well written and for a police recruit a lot of good information we don't get in the academy. This book is great however, even if you aren't a cop or cop to be. Highly Recommended!

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    Posted January 22, 2010

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    Posted March 20, 2012

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    Posted March 1, 2012

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    Posted July 28, 2013

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    Posted December 31, 2013

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